At Grace Bible Fellowship Norwalk we only receive the bible as Gods Special Revelation to mankind. See our page our page on this site called, “Give Attention To Doctrine”.
Many say John saw God the Father in the book of Revelation. Also Daniel in Daniel 7. But they were getting pictures (prophecy) that were to be written down for interpretation. We can’t know that John or Daniel were actually seeing God the Father.
The prophets were getting visions that were to be written as information to teach us. They were not necessarily actually seeing the Father.
Daniel wrote about the “Ancient of Days” as a description to be interpreted as God the Father.
Daniel 7:7 (NKJV) "I watched till thrones were put in place, And the Ancient of Days was seated; His garment [was] white as snow, And the hair of His head [was] like pure wool. His throne [was] a fiery flame, Its wheels a burning fire;
He was no more seeing the actual Father than when he also describes the EU as 10 horns. God gave him 10 horns as a picture that he was to write down (or be interpreted) as 10 Countries. In the same way Daniel was getting pictures in 7:7 that were to be interpreted as the Father. You cannot emphatically state that he was seeing the Father.
Daniel 7:9 (NKJV) "After this I saw in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, exceedingly strong. It had huge iron teeth; it was devouring, breaking in pieces, and trampling the residue with its feet. It [was] different from all the beasts that [were] before it, and it had ten horns.
Jesus said that no one has seen the Father at any time.
John 6:46 (NKJV) Not that anyone has seen the Father, except He who is from God; He has seen the Father.
John 5:34 (NKJV) And the Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me. You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form.
If people anywhere in the bible were seeing the Father then we have a contradiction beacause Jesus said, "No one has seen the Father. Since the bible is without error then we must conclude that what they were seeing were pictures or visions and they were writing them down to be interpreted as the Father.
Or, if they were seeing God in the Old Testament they were seeing a "Christrophany" or an appearance of Jesus who is God.
As a footnote it should be said that some people use these prophecies (in Daniel and Revelation) to try to prove that the Father is Anthropomorphic or (God and Man). No! Jesus is Anthropomorphic. As for the Father, it is not for us to make this image of God. The Father is Spirit; we must worship Him in Spirit and truth.
Anyway. Stephen in Acts chapter 7 saw the heavens open up and he saw Jesus at the right hand of the Father and then he died.
Acts 7:55- 58 (NKJV) But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and said, "Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!"
Then Stephen was killed. Which is consistent with the entire bible that says, “no one has seen God and lived”.
I believe that we are not to make an image of God the Father. This is to break the Second Commandment.
What about in John 14 when Jesus said, "if you have seen me you have seen the Father"?
The short answer about seeing Jesus is seeing the Father is found later after John wrote "If you have seen Me you have seen the Father. He wrote in another letter 1 John 4:12 "No one has seen God at any time". Speaking of the Father. You must now ask your self how can the bible at a later date than the Gospel of John say no one has seen God at any time?
The answer is in John 14:10 and is the explanation. Jesus is in the Father and the Father is in Jesus.
John 14:10 (NKJV) "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own [authority]; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works."
They are not the same Persons as it expressly says here. And It goes on to say later in the same passage in John 14:20 Jesus says He is in the Father and Jesus is in us and we in Him.
John 14:20 (NKJV) At that day you will know that I [am] in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.
Of course we know we are not part of the godhead. So if Jesus meant that He is the Father in verse 9, then it is also neccesary that we are the Father as well because of verse 20 saying we are in the Father. No one would argue that we are the Father.
So when you have seen Jesus you have seen the express image of God. Jesus is all of God that we get to see.
Until we get to heaven we are not even to make that image of the Father this would be idolatry.
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Thanks, Steve Tassi